Navigation Links
New models may reduce seabird bycatch
Date:4/4/2011

DURHAM, N.C. Tens of thousands of albatrosses and other far-ranging seabirds are killed each year after they become caught in longline fishing gear. Innovative new models developed by a Duke University-led research team may help reduce these casualties by more precisely projecting where and when birds and boats are likely to cross paths.

The models use remotely sensed physical and biological data to predict changing conditions such as sea surface temperatures or the availability of phytoplankton that make different parts of the ocean suitable habitats for foraging, nesting and other seabird behaviors at different times of the year, or from year to year.

Conservationists and fisheries managers can overlay maps of predicted habitat suitability onto maps of longline fishing activity and telemetry-tracked bird migrations to better avoid bird bycatch.

Old bycatch models don't account for these dynamic factors; they rely almost exclusively on static overlays based on historic fishery and bird-tracking data.

The Duke-led team tested the new models in case studies of two species of pelagic seabirds, the Laysan albatross and the black-footed albatross, whose long-distance migrations intersect areas of heavy swordfish and tuna fishing activity in Hawaiian fisheries. The studies used historic bycatch and tracking data from 1997 to 2000. Results were published March 23 online in the British peer-reviewed journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

The models' predictions corresponded closely to actual historic bycatch observations, says lead researcher Ramunas Zydelis, a postdoctoral research associate at Duke's Center for Marine Conservation. Black-footed albatrosses were more frequently caught in 1997-2000 despite being 10 times less abundant than Laysan albatrosses, probably because their habitat overlapped more with fisheries, according to the model's predictions.

Zydelis says the findings demonstrate that the new models "may be especially useful in cases where seabird tracking data do not fully represent the population" or reflect the full extent of its current or potential geographic range.

For instance, the models predicted suitable habitats for Laysan albatrosses along the California Current in the eastern Pacific, despite the fact that none of the birds tracked in the study traveled there, he says. Conservationists who relied on old, static models wouldn't have been forewarned about possible bycatch interactions in that region, even though Laysan albatrosses are known to forage in the current's rich waters.

The models also predicted suitable habitats for black-footed albatrosses from July to October in the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest Pacific, though no recent tracking data suggests the species' distribution extends that far.

One possible explanation, says co-author Larry B. Crowder of Duke, may be that huge numbers of black-footed albatrosses were hunted and killed for their feathers in that region during the 19th and early 20th centuries, effectively wiping out the modern population, even though archeological evidence suggests the birds were widespread there in pre-modern times.

"Whether the models have correctly identified potential or recent black-footed albatross range is unknown," says Crowder, director of the Center for Marine Conservation and Stephen Toth Professor of Marine Biology at Duke's Nicholas School of the Environment. "Nevertheless, it underscores the potential for dynamic models to provide new information on animal distribution."


'/>"/>

Contact: Tim Lucas
tdlucas@duke.edu
919-613-8084
Duke University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Models of eel cells suggest electrifying possibilities
2. Swamping bad cells with good in ALS animal models helps sustain breathing
3. New movement models tested at the Smithsonian in Panama
4. Models simulate nitrate dynamics in Garonne, Southwest France
5. David Rose to present Howe School lecture on new technologies and business models, Jan. 29
6. Bacteria are models of efficiency
7. New models question old assumptions about how many molecules it takes to control cell division
8. Disease Models & Mechanisms -- selected for indexing in Medline
9. CSHL team develops mouse models of leukemia that predict response to chemotherapy
10. Crop models help increase yield per unit of water used
11. REGiMMUNE presents enhanced efficacy data in preclinical transplantation models
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/2/2016)...   The Weather Company , an IBM Business (NYSE: ... capability in which consumers will be able to interact with ... via voice or text and receive relevant information about the ... Marketers have long sought an advertising solution that can create ... relevant and valuable; and can scale across millions of interactions ...
(Date:5/16/2016)... May 16, 2016   EyeLock LLC , a ... the opening of an IoT Center of Excellence in ... expand the development of embedded iris biometric applications. ... of convenience and security with unmatched biometric accuracy, making ... aside from DNA. EyeLock,s platform uses video technology to ...
(Date:4/28/2016)... First quarter 2016:   , ... the first quarter of 2015 The gross margin was ... 18.8) and the operating margin was 40% (-13) Earnings ... flow from operations was SEK 249.9 M (21.2) , ... SEK 7,000-8,500 M. The operating margin for 2016 is ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/27/2016)... , June 27, 2016  Sequenom, Inc. (NASDAQ: ... enabling healthier lives through the development of innovative products ... the United States denied its ... the claims of Sequenom,s U.S. Patent No. 6,258,540 (",540 ... criteria established by the Supreme Court,s Mayo Collaborative Services ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... Diego, CA (PRWEB) , ... June 27, 2016 , ... ... solutions for clinical trials, announced today the Clinical Reach Virtual Patient Encounter ... their care circle with the physician and clinical trial team. , Using the CONSULT ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... ... June 27, 2016 , ... Rolf K. ... the faculty of the University of North Carolina Kenan-Flagler Business School ... entrepreneurship at UNC Kenan-Flagler, with a focus on the school’s international efforts, leading ...
(Date:6/27/2016)... 27, 2016   Ginkgo Bioworks , a leading ... was today awarded as one of the World ... world,s most innovative companies. Ginkgo Bioworks is engineering ... real world in the nutrition, health and consumer ... with customers including Fortune 500 companies to design ...
Breaking Biology Technology: